Everybreath’s special night
Proud to have been chosen by Cllr Hannah Gray, Mayor of Bromley, to be one of the two organisations supported during her year in office, Bromley’s Everybreath, a group providing support to people affected by lung cancer, has added a special night to Bromley’s Yuletide. On 3rd December the Mayor and Everybreath together present ‘A Night Of Classic Movie Themes At The Palace’. The Palace is the Courtyard of Bromley’s ‘Old Palace’ and the music is to be played live by the 50-strong ensemble of the Lewisham Concert Band, supplemented by special guest artists and celebrity supporters of the group, led by the Mayor herself. The Mayor says of Everybreath, “They’re a special cause who are making such a difference locally. Lung cancer isn’t well enough understood, and those affected by it have unique needs that Everybreath are meeting. I applaud them, and I’ll be applauding them and the movie themes even more on 3rd December! I can’t wait!”
In addition, in the just-held Nursing Times Awards 2022, the organisation was a finalist in the Cancer Nursing category, listed as: ‘King’s College Hospital with the Everybreath lung cancer support group.’
Everybreath – holding the hands of those affected by lung cancer
Everybreath comprises a group of patients, survivors, bereaved, partners, family, friends, and carers who have experienced the trauma of lung cancer. The primary aim of the group is to provide a safe, relaxed, non-clinical and friendly environment for the provision of both emotional and practical support and guidance to anyone affected by lung cancer. The group meets on the last Thursday of every month in Farnborough.
As well as a forum for meeting others, sharing experiences and developing coping strategies, Everybreath provides access to additional specialist medical and support services. They also organise social events for families and invite experts to speak on a range of related topics.
Everybreath is committed to raising awareness of lung cancer and challenging preconceptions about lung cancer and smoking that can hamper early diagnosis. They work with local GPs, clinical staff at local hospital trusts, as well as other established groups, organisations and charities to improve early diagnosis and lend their support for the campaign for a National Screening program.
Everybreath would like to thank their sponsors for this event: Priory Live Festival; Irwin Mitchell solicitors; EuroABS; and Hugh James law.
More on Everybreath
Emma Barclay, the co-founder of Everybreath, was 44 years old, a wife and a mother with young children when she went to her doctors with a lump in her neck. A referral to an ENT specialist and a biopsy revealed it was advanced lung cancer. Emma was assigned Nicky De Lobel as her specialist cancer nurse during her care, and she went on to co-found Everybreath with Nicky. Experimental treatment followed, the cancer went into remission and after 5 years Emma was discharged.
Nicky says of Emma, “She is special. She refused to give up and carried on. She wants to share her story of hope and that what happened to her can happen to other people.”
The organisation largely comprises volunteers, including former NHS staff, such as Ruth Marshall, and her friend Tessa, who for years has made the tea and coffee, a simple but essential service at Everybreath’s meetings.
Everybreath is working on initiatives with other organisations in the field, but there are very few other organisations offering related services.
Lung cancer is the biggest single cause of death by cancer worldwide. It kills more people than bowel and breast cancer combined. It carries with it a stigma that most cancers don’t, as it is invariably associated with smoking and attracts judgement and blame for sufferers, even the many who have never smoked, by being perceived as self-inflicted, an avoidable risk. Whereas in reality young women in particular can get it having never smoked in their lives.
That helps to explain why often well-known, high profile individuals who suffer from lung cancer and who live well do not readily share their status. That in turn makes the cancer a taboo and hides the message that it can, sometimes, be controlled and lived with and is not always a death sentence. As with many cancers, early detection is important, and that it is so seldom discussed is unhelpful to early detection. A national programme of screening has been newly announced, but even so people should have any symptoms checked and not await the screening programme.